|Sophomore Kelly Brennan had 27 kills and 29 digs in the two matches
MEDFORD - In the first action of the 2012-13 year for Tufts Athletics, the Jumbo volleyball team posted a pair of wins at the Brandeis Invitational on Friday night. Tufts topped Rhode Island College, 3-0, in the first match, then followed with a 3-1 victory against the host Judges.
Tufts came out of the gate strong with a 25-14 win in the first set against RIC (0-5). They went on to sweep the match with 25-23 and 25-16 victories. Sophomore Kelly Brennan (Burr Ridge, IL) recorded 10 kills, two aces and 12 digs, while classmate Hayley Hopper (Carlsbad, CA) finished with 13 kills and three block assists.
Returning NESCAC Co-Player of the Year Kendall Lord (LaJolla, CA) averaged better than 10 assists per set with 31 to go along with two aces and four block assists. The Jumbo blocking game was strong all match, as sophomore Isabel Kuhel (Brisbane, CA) had seven block assists, sophomore Juliana Goodbar (Berkeley, CA) had five assists and senior tri-captain Kiersten Ellefsen (Goshen, NY) was in on three assists.
Against the Judges (4-2), Tufts fell behind 1-0 with a 27-25 loss in the first set. They rallied for 25-22, 25-20, and 25-19 wins to take the match. Brennan was the leder with 17 kills, a solo block, and a team-high 19 digs. Lord set 41 assists, had one ace and made 12 digs with a solo block and a block assist. Kuhel added eight kills with one block solo and two block assists. Hopper ended the match with 11 kills and one block assist.
Junior Virginia Clay (Santa Clara, CA) capped a good night as the Jumbo libero for the first time with 13 digs in the match. Goodbar, also a new regular in the line-up, added to the win with five kills and one ace with no errors in 17 service attempts to go with one solo block and three assists.
The Jumbos (2-0) have an early-season regional test against 4-0 Wellesley at Brandeis tomorrow at noon. They wrap up Brandeis Invitational action against Babson at 2 pm.